This is one for those who love their wines rich, ripe and juicy. The 2016 Castano Solanera Vinas Viejas is deeply colored with excellent concentration and bursting with luscious fruit. It is composed of mostly old-vine Monastrell (65%) with the balance Cabernet Sauvignon (20%) and Tintorera (15%).
The 2016 Castano Solanera Vinas Viejas is a custom cuvée from Eric Solomon. You may know Solomon through the wines he imports including such well-regarded names as Black Slate, Clos Erasmus, Nit de Nin, Hacienda Monasterio, Mas Doix, Aalto and many more. Solomon has been able to locate fantastic old vines and partner with growers and winemakers to reduce yields, increase concentration and ratchet up the quality. Packing so much flavor in a bottle and getting it safely on the shelves in Southern California is a pretty amazing feat indeed. $12.98!!!!
Castano Solanera delivers an experience front loaded with abundant, mouth-coating fruit flavors. It is what we in the business call a crowd-pleaser. Deep, dense and concentrated. Our notes find lovely dark ripe berries in the nose (blackberries and blueberries) tempered with earth tones of slate, minerality and sea salt as well as some hillside garrique. The palate brings brighter, more red-tinged berries (raspberry, strawberry) and plum preserves kept alight with forward acidity and ample tannins-- this is an uplifting wine that will do well in the September sun yet has enough depth and weight to fit in with cooler weather and heartier fare. The finish lingers with elements of light minerality, a reiteration of perfectly-picked berries and a hint of pencil lead and persimmon.
JEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Solanera is up with the finest vintages I’ve tasted of this cuvée (and I’ve had most of them). A blend of 65% Monastrell, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 15% Grenache, all from more limestone and higher elevation soils (and the Monastrell vines are 70 years old), it reveals a saturated purple color as well as full-bodied notes of blue fruits, cedarwood, spiced cherries, and peppery herbs. It’s deep, rich, and textured, yet also balanced and beautifully pure. It’s a steal at the price."